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Texas at California Betting Spread & Expert Pick

Written by on September 15, 2016

It has been a rough season thus far for the Big 12 with the projected three top teams in the conference, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and TCU, already having lost. Now the torch for the conference is being carried by No. 11 Texas as it visits Cal on Saturday night. The Horns are more than a touchdown favorite in NCAA football betting.

Here’s a Closer Look at the Texas at California Betting Spread, Expert Pick & TV Info

When: Saturday, Sept. 17, 10:30 PM ET
Where: Memorial Stadium, Berkeley
Opening NCAAF Lines: Texas -8 (80)

Why Bet on Texas?

The Horns are off a 41-7 home win over UTEP. Freshman quarterback Shane Buechele passed for 244 yards and four touchdowns in UT’s first game as a ranked team since 2013. Buechele threw touchdown passes of 29 and 7 yards to Jerrod Heard, who started at quarterback most of 2015 but moved to wide receiver this season. He also connected with Dorian Leonard for a 46-yard score in the third quarter that made it 34-7. In two games, Buechele has completed 38-of- 53 (71.7%) passes for 524 yards. He has passed for six touchdowns compared to just one INT. Buechele has used his legs effectively as well, rushing 16 times for 67 yards and a touchdown.

The Longhorns have scored 91 points and are averaging 466.5 yards per game thus far. After totaling just nine passing touchdowns a season ago, the Longhorns already have six in the first two weeks of the season. Eight different receivers have already caught a pass for the Longhorns, while five have caught a touchdown pass. A season ago, just six players caught a touchdown pass.

With the win, Texas improved to 2-0 on the season for the first time since the 2012 season when the Longhorns started 4-0. It was UT’s 888th win all-time. The victory was Texas’ first win as an AP Top 25 team since beating New Mexico State on Aug. 31, 2013 and its first victory as a Top-11 team since defeating Texas Tech 24-14 on Sept. 18, 2010. The seven points are the fewest allowed by Texas since Nov. 15, 2014 at Oklahoma State, a 28-7 win. The win was No. 50 of Charlie Strong’s career.

Texas coach Charlie Strong said “all of our starters” will be back to play against Cal. Six of them ended up sitting out the win vs. UTEP with injuries: RB D’Onta Foreman, OT Connor Williams, OG Kent Perkins, C Zach Shackelford, TE Caleb Blueitt and S Dylan Haines.

Why Bet on California?

Cal, whose season began on Aug. 26 in Sydney, Australia with a win over Hawaii, is coming off a 45-40 loss at San Diego State last Saturday. Thus this will be their home opener. in the loss to SDSU, Cal’s running game produced just 82 yards and 3.7 yards per carry. Cal’s problems aren’t contained to execution. They’re also rooted in commitment: Tailback Vic Enwere averaged 7.2 yards per carry, but he only had 10 attempts.

Davis Webb led Cal (1-1) on the stat sheet, completing 41 of a school-record 72 pass attempts for 522 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions. Webb’s 72 attempts were a school record, breaking the mark of 64 by Jared Goff vs. Northwestern on Aug. 31, 2013. Webb’s 41 completions were just shy of the Cal mark of 43, set by Rich Campbell vs. Florida in 1980. Chad Hansen had his second-straight strong performance as Webb’s top target and tied his career-high in receptions, set just two weeks earlier, with 14 catches for 190 yards and a touchdown. The Bears outgained the Aztecs 604-463 but Donnel Pumphrey rushed for 281 yards and three touchdowns to lead SDSU (2-0) offensively.

Cal ranks second in the nation in passing offense (481.5 ypg) and tied for third in total offense (617.0 ypg). The Bears also rank 21st in the nation along with Texas and Ohio in scoring offense (45.5 ppg). Hansen currently leads the nation in per game receptions (14.0 rpg) and receiving yards (175.0 rpg). He is also tied for fourth in touchdown receptions (3).

The Bears picked up their first win over the Longhorns in program history in Austin last season. Cal held off a late fourth-quarter comeback and won, 45-44, when the Longhorns missed an extra point in the final seconds. Cal has won 12 of its last 14 home openers, dating back to 2002.

My Expert Pick

Longhorns are 6-13 ATS in their last 19 games following a ATS win.
Longhorns are 3-9 ATS in their last 12 games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game.
Longhorns are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games.
Golden Bears are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game.
Golden Bears are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in September.

Take the points here on NCAA football odds and go under that huge total.